Ben's Chili Bowl (1213 U St. NW), a D.C. landmark that celebrated its 55th anniversary last month, has announced that it will expand to Rosslyn, Va. Yesterday, the Ali family (the restaurant was owned by the late Ben Ali, who passed away in 2009) issued a statement explaining that a Virginia location of the D.C. staple will open early next year:
With all of the love and support that D.C. residents have shown us spanning the decades, we are very conscious and thankful for those customers that drive in from Maryland and those that cross the bridges from Virginia to come to Ben’s. In our efforts to bring the food and experience that you come to U St for closer to you, we have decided to cross the bridge ourselves and bring a Ben’s Chili Bowl to you in Rosslyn. We are excited about working with Arlington Co and we look forward to meeting our new neighbors up on Wilson Blvd. If all goes well we hope to open in early 2014. Thanks for your well wishes and your continued support and blessings.
Ali's son and co-owner Nizam Ben Ali told the Washington Business Journal that the new location will occupy 1725 Wilson Boulevard. Ali also revealed that this location could open before the Northeast H Street location. Ali says the move to Virginia is to make it easier for everyone in the DMV area to access Ben's.
"Sometimes it's very difficult to get to Ben's on U Street, with the parking," he said. "As we grow, we want to test out different markets and we hope the love will be there in Arlington as it is on U Street."